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February 11, 2009

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Northern Ireland seeks views on fire-safety reforms

The Northern Ireland Executive has launched a three-month consultation on proposals to reform fire-safety regulations.

The changes, outlined in the draft Fire Safety Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2009 will bring the country into line with England, Scotland and Wales.

These regulations will replace existing fire-safety provisions covered by part III of the Fire Services (Northern Ireland) Order 1984 and the Fire Precautions (Workplace) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2001, and introduce one comprehensive piece of fire-safety legislation covering all non-domestic premises in the country.

Announcing the consultation, Public safety minister, Michael McGimpsey, said: “The new regulations will replace the current requirement to have fire certificates for non-domestic premises with risk assessments. Employers, owners, managers and landlords will in future be responsible for ensuring that fire risk assessments are carried out and measures to protect lives are put in place.”

The regulations will be accompanied by guidance aimed at those with duties under the proposed legislation.

The consultation documents are available on the Northern Ireland Executive’s Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety website. Comments must be received by 8 May.

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